Catching up with communications in the Botany Group during July. This is from an email from Jocie to the group on July 10.
A not-to-be-missed July event is the blooming of Henderson’s checker-mallow (Sidalcea hendersonii) in the Komoks estuary. This is a large, showy plant in the mallow family (Malvaceae) that looks a bit like a hollyhock. Another name for it is “marsh hollyhock.”
Another plant that grows nearby in the same habitat is the springbank clover (Trifolium wormskjoldii), which peaks in late June (photographed here on June 25). First Nations peoples up and down the coast were very familiar with this plant, as the fleshy white rhizomes were dug up and harvested in the fall. According to Plants of Coastal British Columbia, the flavour is “sweet, similar to that of young peas.” Today, very few people are aware of the existence of this historically significant clover.
To see these plants, park at the Rotary viewing stand on the Dyke Road and follow the small trail from the corner of the viewing stand (Courtenay side). There are large clumps of checker-mallow there, and there may still be some springbank clover in bloom also. There’s more clover along the shore towards Comox, in front of the viewing stand (watch your footing here and proceed slowly!).
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Catching up with communications in the Botany Group during July. This is from an email from Jocie to the group on July 7.
Here are some notes from Helen R. about some interesting plants at Kin Beach:
These two plants, photographed by Terry Thormin, are blooming at Kin Beach.
The harvest brodiaea, Brodiaea coronaria, is mostly in the tall grass between the playground and the huge burn pile which is covered with a tarp.
The prolific petrorhagia, Petrorhagia prolifera, was a great surprise, as it used to be in the park many years ago in the 1990s, but has not been seen again until now. It is a member of the pink family, Caprophyllaceae. It’s about 10’’ high, very slim, and is to the left of the sidewalk going down to the beach, and towards the heart sculpture. There are lots of plants.
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Catching up with communications in the Botany Group during July. This is from an email from Jocie to the group on July 1.
Here are some updates from Alison M. on what is in bloom at Paradise Meadows [on July 1]. The snowmelt is quite rapid this year, so the flowers are in full swing:
The past two weeks of mostly warm sunny weather have brought on many blooms in Paradise Meadows, some earlier than expected. So the insectivorous butterwort (Pinguicula vulgaris) and the green bog orchid, (Platanthera hyperborea?) are widespread. We saw a couple of specimens of the scented white bog orchid (Platanthera dilatata) just beginning to open.
By the way, there is a researcher from VIU (Jasmine Janes) who is conducting a research project on orchid pollination and will be up in the Meadows very soon to set up her little cameras, which will be identified with signs.
We were also fortunate last Sunday to catch the nagoonberry (Rubus arcticus ssp. acaulis) in bloom. So close to the ground it is often completely hidden by thevacciniaand other low-growing plants. It is to be found on the extension of Paradise Meadows Loop, in the wet area just after the wooded section and before you reach the platform with the bench that overlooks the deep trout pond.
So the Meadows continue to be awash with colour – don’t miss the treat.
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Though exotic looking, all of these are quite common in Paradise Meadows and similar subalpine meadow habitats. Buckbean is aquatic, growing in the ponds, deer cabbage is widespread in the meadows, and fringed grass-of-Parnassus is often found along the rocky edges of subalpine streams.
Photos courtesy of botany group photographer John Brears.
1. Buck Bean (Menyanthes trifoliata) 2. Deer Cabbage (Nephrophyllidium crista-galli) 3. Fringed grass-of-Parnassus (Parnassia fimbriata) ... See MoreSee Less
Sharing this post from Tsolum River Restoration group. Much work went into covering the toxic mine site to prevent the run off from the mine from killing fish in the Tsolum River. It took years to bring back the salmon. Please help to resolve this issue of all terrain vehicles damage to the site and other ecological sensitive areas. This planet is our only home and our only source of food and water. ... See MoreSee Less